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Author Topic: 1990's Zodiac Stem/Crown Problems  (Read 5901 times)

Offline Sea Wolf

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1990's Zodiac Stem/Crown Problems
« on: April 12, 2011, 03:16:18 PM »
#320684657363

Says the original crown has been replaced but it is included with the watch.
How do you fix these crown issues?  Anyone know if it can be done?
« Last Edit: April 12, 2011, 03:45:36 PM by Butch »
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Offline Butch

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1990's Zodiac Stem/Crown Problems
« Reply #1 on: April 12, 2011, 03:44:52 PM »
How do you fix these crown issues?  Anyone know if it can be done?

You don't. It cannot.  The following is why I do not own any 1990s Zodiacs.

Most watches throughout the years had a crown that screwed onto the stem and the other pointed end slid into the movement and was screwed down by the movement. (See first picture.)

The 1990's models had a soldered stem/crown combination part. (See the second picture.)

Notice in the 2nd picture the stem is smooth where it meets the crown? That is because in manufacturing the crown was soldered/welded to the stem. It is a 1 piece part. It cannot be fixed when the the two pieces break apart or the crown threads get stripped.

NO ONE has these parts as they were all used up to make whole watches for sale. (This is allowed by Swiss law when a company goes under.) The only thing a watchmaker can do is TRY to find and put on an aftermarket stem and unsigned crown, IF a suitable replacement can be found. Some of the 1990's models do not have aftermarket parts that even fit them. And it seems there is no cross reference parts lists available (think Bestfit) for 1990s Zodiacs either.

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Offline jon p

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Re: 1990's Zodiac Stem/Crown Problems
« Reply #2 on: April 12, 2011, 09:30:47 PM »
i think a lot of us were confused a bit on this issue--great post, i know i completely understand the problem now. a good reason to stay away from them. i just cant believe none of these  watchmakers have figured out a cure!! i have an auto sea wolf that is ok,BUT i am afraid to do anything with it in fear of stripping it.

Offline JDS (Ohio)

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Re: 1990's Zodiac Stem/Crown Problems
« Reply #3 on: June 14, 2011, 11:52:04 AM »
How do you fix these crown issues?  Anyone know if it can be done?

You don't. It cannot.  The following is why I do not own any 1990s Zodiacs.

Most watches throughout the years had a crown that screwed onto the stem and the other pointed end slid into the movement and was screwed down by the movement. (See first picture.)

The 1990's models had a soldered stem/crown combination part. (See the second picture.)

Notice in the 2nd picture the stem is smooth where it meets the crown? That is because in manufacturing the crown was soldered/welded to the stem. It is a 1 piece part. It cannot be fixed when the the two pieces break apart or the crown threads get stripped.

NO ONE has these parts as they were all used up to make whole watches for sale. (This is allowed by Swiss law when a company goes under.) The only thing a watchmaker can do is TRY to find and put on an aftermarket stem and unsigned crown, IF a suitable replacement can be found. Some of the 1990's models do not have aftermarket parts that even fit them. And it seems there is no cross reference parts lists available (think Bestfit) for 1990s Zodiacs either.
It's a real shame that none of us own (nor have the skills to use) a Swiss bar feed/screw machine to make new ones.  Of course, you'd also need the video / optical inspection equipment to figure out what dimensions to make them to; I assume no one has the blue prints or CADD files for those crown/stems. :'(

I have a '90s Sea Wolf ("Blue Point"), and you thankfully already warned me about the crown issue, so I'm being extra careful with it.
John

Offline Butch

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Re: 1990's Zodiac Stem/Crown Problems
« Reply #4 on: June 14, 2011, 12:48:22 PM »
Let me add the following in closing:

If you have an automatic, wind it, set it, put it on a winder. Forget the date, look at your cell phone if you don't know what day it is.

If you have a kortz model, your golden. Forget the date, look at your cell phone if you don't know what day it is.

The only way around this is to buy a NOS model and just be aware of the issue and careful when screwing it down.

« Last Edit: June 14, 2011, 01:30:12 PM by Butch »
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Offline jon p

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Re: 1990's Zodiac Stem/Crown Problems
« Reply #5 on: July 07, 2011, 05:17:58 PM »
butch, you said "if you have the kortz model you are golden-"-please explain. the quartz does not have the same defect? i am looking at a marine life quartz chrono right now to buy if i can get a good price. the crown is ok on it. THANKS , jon p

Offline Butch

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Re: 1990's Zodiac Stem/Crown Problems
« Reply #6 on: July 07, 2011, 09:01:56 PM »
On the kortz models you rarely have to use the crown.
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Offline jon p

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Re: 1990's Zodiac Stem/Crown Problems
« Reply #7 on: July 08, 2011, 10:38:21 AM »
 :agreei    butch, i see what you mean---- good point! i thought they all had the same potential for problems.

Offline Butch

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Re: 1990's Zodiac Stem/Crown Problems
« Reply #8 on: July 08, 2011, 10:45:39 AM »
They do, but a mechanical watch uses the crown far more often than a kortz.
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Offline Sea Wolf

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Re: 1990's Zodiac Stem/Crown Problems
« Reply #9 on: July 08, 2011, 11:05:18 AM »
I would like to know if the Genender SSW has this same issue?
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Offline Butch

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Re: 1990's Zodiac Stem/Crown Problems
« Reply #10 on: July 08, 2011, 11:27:46 AM »
As far as I know, yes. They reused a lot of the parts (and parts makers) from the 1990's SSW.
« Last Edit: July 08, 2011, 11:28:13 AM by Butch »
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